What has Keely Discovered?
The Daily News - 5/26/1886 - For a number of years Mr. John W. Keely, of this city, and various associates have occupied the attention of the public to a greater or less extent, from time to time. The claim on behalf of Mr. Keely is that he has discovered a new motive power, so far transcending all previous achievements in this direction, as to overturn most of the universally recognized conclusions regarding dynamics. Of course such a claim was sure to be met with derision, and the derision was sure of continuance until silenced by the most thorough practical demonstration.
"Discussion of the matter has not seemed profitable in the absence of such a demonstration; but now it seems proper to note an apparently new status of Mr. Keely's affairs, as shown by some experiments conducted last Saturday in the presence of a number of visitors. Some, at least, of these visitors were qualified for critical observation, and the note-worthy fact is that Mr. Keely was able to produce, under their close inspection, a dynamic result which none of them pretended to account for by any known law of physics, outside of that which Mr. Keely claims as the base of his operation. He evolved, almost instantaneously, according to the united report of those who were present, a substance having an elastic energy varying from 10,000 to 20,000 pounds per square inch, and instantly discharged or liberated it into the atmosphere, without the evolution of heat in its production, or of cold on its sudden liberation. These phenomena alone would seem to establish that the substance he is dealing with is one hitherto unknown to science.
"It seems rather frivolous to dismiss this matter with the supposition that trained specialists are to be hoodwinked by concealed springs, buried pipes for the introduction of compressed air and the like. Surely such gentlemen ought very easily to determine at once whether the surroundings and conditions of the experiments were such as to favour any kind of legerdemain; and if they found them so, it is strange that they should spend some hours in investigating that which has been asserted to be 'a transparent humbug.'
"The appearances are that Mr. Keely has at least removed his enterprise from the domain of ridicule to that of respectful investigation, and this, after all, is great progress." (The Daily News)